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Fixing GHWT Cymbal Sensitivity Problems

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When Guitar Hero World Tour came out in the States, many people reported that their drumpads were either too sensitive (triggering more than one hit), or not sensitive enough (not detecting hits). Activision’s response was that the problems were limited to only one batch of drumkits, so I thought I would be safe (being in Australia). But I guess my faith in tech companies was misplaced. Silly me.

My kit had problems with the cymbals. They were the “not sensitive enough” category – in particular, the yellow cymbal, which, unfortunately, is the most used pad in the game. For a number of months I just lived with it, tweaking it unsuccessfully with the midi USB cable (which Activision will send out for free if you report the problem on their website). But inspired by Jason’s success, I thought I’d put in a bit of effort and find a more permanent solution.

Unlike Jason’s problem, my solder points were solid. I tried the tape-and-springy-cardboard fix suggested on PowerTunesPlus, since I wasn’t keen on permanently gluing the sensor down at first. For me, neither the tape nor cardboard made a difference.

I then took the plunge and tried the hot glue gun fix, also suggested by PowerTunesPlus. This worked great. I still had to tweak the sensitivity a little using the tuning software, but at least now it is around 99% accurate.

Here’s what the cymbal looks like with the back cover removed, and a close-up of my dodgy hot-glue gunning skills. My yellow cymbal needed two blobs of glue, whereas the orange cymbal only required one.

Now I can no longer blame the hardware for bad drumming.

If you decide to fix your cymbals, a word of warning: Don’t overtighten the screws! The screws screw directly into the rubber, so if you’re not careful you might end up seeing the pointy end of the screw poking out of the top of the cymbal …

Written by Richard

16 April, 2009 at 10:44 pm

Posted in tech

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